ARDMORE — University of Oklahoma President David Boren announced at the OU Board of Regents meeting Wednesday that the Helmerich Foundation of Tulsa is making a $500,000 gift for the renovation of a floor in the Neustadt Wing of Bizzell Memorial Library.
“University Libraries has been significantly enhanced by the generous support of Peggy Helmerich and her late husband, Walter Helmerich III, who established both a major endowment for the library and an endowed faculty chair for the dean of Libraries,” Boren said in a statement. “This most recent gift continues the Helmerich family’s legacy of generosity.”
In recognition of that support, OU Regents voted to name the renovated space the Peggy V. Helmerich Collaborative Learning Center.
The library project, which is expected to be completed for the fall semester, involves the complete renovation and modernization of about 18,000 square feet on the lower level of the Neustadt Wing.
This type of environment enhances student-to-student and faculty-student interaction, active learning and immediate feedback, said Rick Luce, dean of University Libraries.
The renovation includes a variety of individual and group study areas, such as seminar space, a community room, a digital scholarship lab, and group meeting and research areas.
FY15 budget and tuition
The OU Regents — meeting at the Noble Foundation Conference Center in Ardmore for a three-day business meeting and retreat — approved the university’s fiscal year 2015 budget and a tuition increase that averages 4.8 percent for undergraduate and graduate students.
Students in the guaranteed tuition rate program will pay $158.20 per credit hour, while students in the flat rate tuition program will pay $3,847.25 per semester if they are Oklahoma residents and $10,234.25 if they are nonresidents.
In-state graduate students will pay $183.10 per credit hour, while nonresident graduate students will pay $707.10.
The $1.797 billion budget approved by the OU Regents includes a 2 percent across-the-board pay increase for faculty and staff on the Norman campus.
The proposed tuition increases and budget plan will be considered for final approval Thursday by the Oklahoma State Regents for Higher Education.